As someone who wants to practice safe driving, you understand that drinking alcohol shortly before getting behind the wheel could cause a devastating crash. However, consuming caffeine with alcohol can also create conditions for hazardous driving.
Some people believe that drinking coffee after having alcohol can cause them to sober up quicker. WebMD explains why this is not the case and describes reasons why a mix of alcohol and caffeine can be dangerous.
Masking alcohol effects
While it is true that caffeine might help someone feel more alert, it does nothing to increase sobriety. This is because caffeine does not speed up the processing of alcohol through the liver.
As a result, a driver could think he or she is in fine shape to drive. This deception could result in an automobile crash since the person is not actually sober.
Encouraging binge drinking
Drinking caffeine soon after having alcohol could actually motivate a person to drink more. Since caffeine can hide some alcohol effects, the drinker may think he or she is okay to have more drinks. This could lead to binge drinking and further compromised judgment.
Causing heart problems
Caffeine and alcohol together may raise blood pressure. Depending on the health of the drinker, heightened blood pressure can increase the possibility of an irregular heartbeat, or more seriously, a stroke or heart attack. This could also put other people at risk if the drinker experiences a heart problem while operating a vehicle.
Increased awareness of these risks will hopefully motivate drivers to be responsible with their drinking. A driver who hits you while under the influence could cause you serious injury and be responsible for your damages.